Automobile News

Horses, carriages, and bicycles ruled the dirt roads in Honolulu before 1899. On October 8, 1899, people watched Henry P. Baldwin and Edward D. Tenney drive Hawaii’s first “horseless car” around town. In 1906, Hawaii issued its first driver’s license.

Afterwards, automobile sections appeared in Hawaii newspapers. They included automobile news, such as automobile sales, automobile races, lists of motor vehicle registrations and new automobile models, and automobile ads. Read more.

The Development of Hotels in Waikiki

What images do you usually conjure up when you think of Waikiki? Hotels? Tourists? Retail businesses? It wasn’t always a tourist mecca. In fact, before the 1800s, Waikiki was a marshland where Native Hawaiians raised taro and fish, and Hawaiian royalty surfed the waves at the beach.

As the number of visitors to Hawaii increased in the 1880s, hotels were opening and Waikiki, and Waikiki became a place for visitors. Hawaii newspapers provide an insight to the development of Waikiki. Read more about it in the “The Development of Hotels in Waikiki.”

The Ancient Hawaiians’ Political Assassins

For their medical needs, ancient Hawaiians relied on the kahuna (Hawaiian sorcerer). For political assassins, the Hawaiians also relied on the kahuna.

When the United States annexed Hawaii, some people thought this event would stop the kahuna. However, they warned prominent native Hawaiians supporting annexation that they would face a dire fate. Shortly afterwards, they mysteriously died.

Did the kahuna pray them to death or poison them? Read more about it in “Under the Spell of Kahuna.”

Finders, Keepers? Do Hawaiian Artifacts Belong in a Museum?

Does an ancient Hawaiian artifact belong in a museum?

Obviously, steamer purser Jim Davis thought so. He found a 150-year-old stone awa bowl where a native hut used to stand in Kona. Davis planned to offer the bowl to Bishop Museum, which did not have one made of stone.

Read more about it in “Curio Comes from Kona.”

A Screaming Infant

Would you expect a screaming infant to attract the attention of police and firefighters? Somebody thought the infant’s scream sounded like somebody was yelling “fire.” Read the article “Screaming Infant Roused the Town.”

Billboards in Hawaii?

Is Hawaii better off without billboards?

In 1912, a group of women thought so and vowed to protect Hawaii’s natural beauty. When they patronized a store, they left this note:

“I will not buy anything advertised on billboards as long as I can find a substitute, or a last resort, go without.”

This was the start of The Outdoor Circle. It would fight against billboards in Hawaii for the next fifteen years.

In 1927, a billboard ban became law. Thus, billboards are banned from Hawaii today.

Read more about beginning of The Outdoor Circle’s fight in “Women Open War on Billboards.”

Genealogical Research on Chronicling America

Heather Wilkinson Rojo used Chronicling America to conduct genealogical research. Hawaii newspapers. In her blog, Rojo wrote about her great aunt Mary Lambert Jones and cousin John Owen Dominis, Queen Liliuokalani’s husband and the Prince Consort of Hawaii:

“Chronicling America and Hawaiian Cousins”

“Chronicling America Website, Part Two”

“More Hawaiian Relatives via the Chronicling America Website”

“Cousins Collaborate on a Genealogy Story”

“Read more about it!”

The Floating Island of Happiness

Tired of dealing with life? Interested in living on the floating island of happiness, or the “Island of Peace?”

Kahuna Kaauamoku told Hawaiians in Hana, Maui, to prepare for the floating island. So the twenty-six Hawaiians decorated her house with ti leaves and pua hala, prayed, danced, and chanted. Around the kahuna’s house, they built a spirit fence and placed their belongings, including animals, tools, kitchen stoves, and food.

Would the floating island come and bring salvation to the believers? Or was Kahuna Kaauamo just a “wise guy who can pull the wool over other folks’ eyes?” Read more about it in “Floating Islanders of Hana Postpone Happy Land.”